News: Israel, Barack Obama, Pet Shop Boys, Harry Connick Jr.

 roadTime magazine: Is it time to end marriage?

Bubbles  roadLady GaGa breaks out the bubbly in San Diego.

 roadGay Israeli couple offered "maternity leave" for first time: "Yonatan
Gher, director of Jerusalem's nonprofit Open House Pride and Tolerance
organization, has received institute approval of a 64-day leave from
work on the occasion of the birth of his biological son, born of a
surrogate mother in India. His partner of seven years commenced formal
adoption procedures, so that the child will be formally recognized as
his as well."

 roadHarry Connick Jr. lets it all hang out.

 roadOur Towleroad correspondents Josh & Josh make the NYT and show how time can be well-spent during a recession.

 roadSanta Clara County, California sees "surge" in anti-gay hate crimes: "Anti-gay incidents accounted
for more than half of hate-crime cases last year — 56 percent — a big
jump from only 15 percent in 2007. There were 14 anti-gay cases out of
25 hate-crime cases in 2008, compared with only 3 out of 20 in 2007."

 roadThe Gay Men's Chorus of Los Angeles are a bunch of Proud Marys.

Rbar roadHard times shutter gay nightclub R-Bar in Vallejo, California.

 roadBurundi restores bid to criminalize homosexuality: "Senators last month voted through a draft criminal code law that
abolished the death penalty but they rejected an amendment that would
make homosexuality punishable by a jail sentence of up to two years. The lower house National Assembly reinstated that clause to the draft on Friday."

 roadNBC's Kings warps the Biblical tale of Jonathan and David in an anti-gay way.

 roadTimes are bad but likely worse for the homeless, runaway, and at-risk LGBTQ youth that go to the Ruth Ellis Center in Detroit 11,000 times a year. We hear that the center is facing some hard times right now (as many people are) but if you're looking for somewhere you might direct your philanthropy you might want to find out more about it.

 roadWanda Sykes wants to send Rush Limbaugh's big ass to Guantanamo Bay.

 roadMatt Damon takes on rugby role in new film.

 roadWhite House gives New York City Council speaker Christine Quinn an easy out from the city's anti-gay St. Patty's Day parade: "Quinn is one of the very few New York electeds who has been invited to
President Barack Obama’s White House Saint Patrick’s Day party."

 roadSarah Palin's war on wildlife continues.

 roadThe Rochester cops that are suing the city of Rochester over the gay bashing incident don't want city lawyers to defend them, obviously.

 roadThe Guardian's Music Weekly Extra talks to the Pet Shop Boys. And the BBC spends five minutes with the pair.

 roadRyan Gosling offers two looks in new photo shoot: cute puppy and scary doll.

 roadPost-Wright: Obama's circle of 5 pastors.
"All are men, two of them white and three black — including the Rev.
Otis Moss Jr., a graying lion of the civil rights movement. Two, the
entrepreneurial dynamos Bishop T. D. Jakes and the Rev. Kirbyjon H.
Caldwell, also served as occasional spiritual advisers to President
George W. Bush. Another, the Rev. Jim Wallis, leans left on some
issues, like military intervention and poverty programs, but opposes
None of these pastors are affiliated with the religious right, though
several are quite conservative theologically. One of them, the Rev.
Joel C. Hunter, the pastor of a conservative megachurch in Florida, was
branded a turncoat by some leaders of the Christian right when he began
to speak out on the need to stop global warming."